BINGHAMTON, New York — At the start of January, Donald Savastano was one lucky man.
He started the new year $1 million richer, thanks to a New York Lottery’s Merry Millionaire scratch off ticket.
“This is gonna change our lives, to tell you the truth,” he said back when he won.
With that chunk of money he won, Savastano had some plans in mind — he wanted to get a new truck, go on vacation and fund his retirement.
He also planned a trip to the doctor. Savastano was a self-employed carpenter and didn’t have insurance. He hadn’t been feeling good for awhile, so he decided to finally get help.
The news wasn’t good.
“That’s when they found out he had cancer,” said Danielle Scott, a cashier at the store Savastano bought the winning ticket.
He had stage four cancer that had spread to his brain and lungs.
Just 23 days after winning the lottery, Savastano passed away.
“I was hoping that money was maybe going to save his life,” Scott said. “I just hope they can use the money and give him the best. He was a good person. He deserved it. I just wish he had more time with it.”